If money is tight, then doing some projects yourself makes perfect sense. Get inside the mind of your contractor. Be kind to those you hire. If you don't want to have to think, buy a condo.
Otherwise, yes, owning a home can be stressful. My house was built in the 1890s and there are a lot of things that are wrong. But this house has the potential to survive mansions. Christian Nolen, owner of the Watertown house, states that his renovation experience was relatively speaking, quite stress-free.
The key to your peace of mind? He was able to take time off from his job as a real estate developer and devote himself full time to demolition and decision-making. I didn't let myself fall into surprises. I was there when surprises happened. What scares the most is when something unexpected happens.
You're tearing the floor apart and you see that the plumbers have cut all the joists. I could see how it happened. So when the crew discovered that the windowsill and porches of the house had withstood a termite invasion, they were on hand to inspect the damage. Home repairs are part of owning a property, there's no question about it.
But if the thought of having to pay for those repairs causes you stress, follow the steps above to mitigate it. That way, you'll spend more time enjoying your home and less time worrying about having to fix it. Home renovation is often stressful, but having clear rules and expectations can alleviate much of that stress and put you on the path to your dream home.